Style director Adrian Clark reports back on the final day of the Paris catwalk collections.
The final three days of Paris were scattered with highlights. Balmain showed Empire-styled military coats and jackets, worn with biker jeans in distressed red velvet with an update on the biker jacket in quilted down-filled nylon.
Kris Van Assche for Dior (picture 1) looked to a military theme to serve up the best collection he has created since he began at the couture house. In the past, Assche has hidden in the shadow of his predecessor (Hedi Slimane) but this collection, to my mind, was the first time he has broken out of his shell. His new vision for Dior included slimline parkas and double-breasted coats, four-button suits that fastened high and capes in army shades of khaki Loden, that borrowed their detailing from the utilitarian workwear worn by Mandarin soldiers.
Kenzo (picture 2) proved an exciting moment in the fashion week calendar. Now under the creative guidance of Humberto Leon and Carol Lim (Opening Ceremony), the two designers have brought some of their streetwise credibility and casual charm to the label. It was playful, young and relevant, with contemporary tailoring and just a smattering of print from the Kenzo DNA to move it forward.
Lucas Ossendrijver at Lanvin showed some of the most desirable tailored garments of the week, with a mix of classic and experimental, in layers of imaginative proportions. Relaxed styles in shades of powder blue and ochre played with a new silhouette of unstructured and oversized shoulders, first on a double-breasted jacket and then on sweatshirts.
Paul Smith was dark and mysterious – in a good way – with satin sportswear in shades of midnight and his take on Icelandic ski knits. But it was left to Stefano Pilati at Yves Saint Laurent (picture 3) to define the season. It was strict yet slick with tailoring in black wool that featured leather collars and shoulder patches, loose trousers with sleeveless tops and luxury spins on pilot flight jackets. Smart, sophisticated and desirable.
ShortList's style director Adrian Clark, explains how you can achieve the top right look from the Lanvin Autumn Winter 2012 show:
Come the final weekend in Paris, the make-up teams need to enlist extra tricks to keep the eyes of tired models looking bright and their complexions fresh. To achieve the bright-eyed look at Lanvin (far right) we would recommend a swipe under the peepers with L’Oreal Men Expert Hydra Energetic Eye Roll-On £9.18 for 10ml. The rollerball technology, delivering a cooling layer of serum, helps to massage the build-up of fluids, while delivering a shot of hydration. The hair at Lanvin was very on-trend, featuring a chopped into and feathered texture, with a heavy side-parted fringe. To replicate this very defined texture try using L’Oreal Paris Studio Line Dirty Clean Texturising Paste £3.56 for 75ml. This thick paste, enriched with beeswax, gives hold and flexibility allowing you to sculpt strands and define the ends.